Rents outside London hit record high

Asking rents outside London rose to a record high in September, driven by a surge in demand from renters.

There was particularly strong price growth in the South West and northern regions, according to the data from Rightmove.

Asking rents are up 4% in the South West and up 3.3% in the North East, 3.1% in the North West, and 3% in Yorkshire & the Humber.

London is the only region where rents are falling, fuelled largely by a 6.8% drop in inner London, while outer London edged up by 0.8%.

In terms of most in demand property type, two-bedroom houses have overtaken studio flats, which have dropped seven places year-on-year, reflecting a growing desire for more space to work from home.

 

Rank

Most in demand property type

September 2020

Most in demand property type

September 2019

1

Two bedroom house

Studio flat

2

Two bedroom bungalow

Two bedroom house

3

Three bedroom house

One bedroom house

4

Three bedroom bungalow

One bedroom flat

5

One bedroom house

Three bedroom house

6

Four bedroom house

Two bedroom bungalow

7

One bedroom flat

Two bedroom flat

8

Studio flat

Three bedroom bungalow

9

Two bedroom flat

Four bedroom house

10

Five bedroom house

Three bedroom flat

Overall, there has been a surge in demand for rental homes, with the number of prospective tenants registering with Rightmove increasing by 20% in September nationally, compared with the same month last year.

However, available stock is only up by 2% so renters will still find strong competition, especially for houses.

It is a different story in the capital, where available stock is up by 80% on last September.

Asking rents have been falling since the beginning of lockdown in London, and are now an average of £110 per month lower than back on 23 March at the start of lockdown.

Looking at property types in London, asking rents of studio flats are 3.5% lower than this time last year, one-bedroom flats are down by 3%, and two-bedroom flats are down 4%. Two-bedroom houses are faring better, up by 0.7%.

Rightmove’s commercial director Miles Shipside said: “Landlords with a large portfolio of studio flats may find they need to accept lower rents than over the past few years, although let’s not forget that overall rents have gone up by £100 per month outside London and £140 in the capital over the past five years so those with a longer term view will still be able to make some good returns.

“It will be the accidental landlords that have one property that need a good agent more than ever, to promote the attractive attributes of their buy-to-lets. I’ve heard from some agents that they’re now advising their landlords to turn part of the living room into a work from home space, or offering to install high-speed broadband for tenants as an added incentive.

“The rise in demand for properties that have more space and that typically have higher rents is helping push up average rents to new record highs.”

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One Comment

  1. AlwaysAnAgent

    This is too short a period to indicate anything. Using a single month of rental stats will fuel anti-renting headlines.

     

    Over a 12 month period to August rents in London have increased by 1.3% and in England it’s 1.5%.

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